One classic Southern institution meets another on Friday when Waffle House opens a concession stand at Turner Field, home of the Atlanta Braves. The Braves made an announcement on Twitter that says it all, or mostly says it all:
— Atlanta Braves (@Braves) July 25, 2013
Headquartered in Georgia, Waffle House has about 1,700 locations across the U.S., mostly in the South, and frequently puts them next to interstate exits. If you've never been to one, Waffle House is an IHOP/Denny's kind of diner that serves breakfast or dinner whenever, including shockingly good chili. To be blunt, it's a great place to go in the middle of the night — no matter if you're hung over, or just hungry.
And that brings up a negative about the Waffle House planned for Turner Field: It's not going to be open 24 hours. In addition to being the first Waffle House inside of a major league ballpark, it's the first one that closes. Sacrilege! The whole point of going to Waffle House is that it's the only thing open and feed me greasy food now. It at least had better be the last concession stand to close.
And the menu is limited. From Eater.com:
[I]ts menu ... includes classic, peanut butter, and chocolate chip waffles as well as hash browns served plain, with toppings, or "all the way," aka smothered and covered with onions, cheese, chili, ham, and peppers. At $9.00, those all-the-way hash browns are the most expensive thing on the menu and are sold at a mark-up of at least three dollars from their stand-alone restaurant price.
Ballpark food almost always is more expensive than the outside stuff, so that's not unexpected (but NINE-DOLLAR HASH BROWNS?). Despite those limitations, I predict people will line up long and far for waffles and loaded-up hash browns. Check it out near section 130.
Man, it would have been handy to have a Waffle House at Fulton County Stadium for the Fourth of July game against the Mets in 1985 that ended in the wee hours. Waffles, Rick Camp and 4 a.m. fireworks? Who's ready?!